Happy New Year my fellow readers!
With continued threats of snow I thought it best to inform you about winter safety. Even drivers that only work in the day need to be aware as there is a chance you could get stuck and should be prepared.
Before you depart make sure you have good check over your motor. Ensure you have enough screen wash and it contains sufficient water and winter additive, check that all lights are in full working order and clean and that screen and windows are all clear inside and out. You don't want a break down and be sitting waiting due to something that could have been prevented before you left!
Know your route and stay up to date on any traffic jams or road closures. This might sound obvious but when you are traveling along the same route day in, day out it can be easy to forget that these things can happen. Make sure your mobile phone is working (but not to use while driving) and fully charged in case things change and you need to call for assistance.
So the obvious gear to have is blankets, sheets and spare clothes but also, if it is possible, carry a shovel and torch too! Who knows where you could get stuck...in the middle of Scotland or the valleys of Wales so always think about what would happen if your night heater went and you have nowhere to go. Also, if your fuel light is on then your night heater may not work so try and fill up before a night out. These are easy to store in your cabs and don't have to take up much room. In severe weather conditions check with your supervisor if the deliveries or collections are open and have access.
Always take a flask of something warm with you. Those morning starts can be dark, cold and miserable and a good flask (that you may have received for Christmas) full of coffee, hot chocolate or soup could really brighten your day and warm your belly. A good flask could keep it warm for many hours meaning you can refill where you can and keep it going all day.
Remember your breaking distances! These can be 10 times longer in bad weather so please think of these when driving behind someone. Try and keep to one lane where possible in low visible weather and drive at a comfortable pace. Be mindful of any freezing and black ice on the road and stay vigilant.
Finally, worse case, if things start to feel dangerous then pull over safely until it starts to clear. Call your supervisor and take advice as you don't want to cause an accident or become part of one. The most important thing is your safety and those of all road users!
Now I have written all of this, here's hoping that we will hit Summer next week and be talking about our earliest heatwave to date! If you have any winter safety (or summer safety if things change) advice then please comment below.
Thank you for reading, drive safe and over to you!